Dell C1100: How to update BIOS and BMC to the latest version.

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Dell C1100: How to update BIOS and BMC to the latest version.

  • I want to write this guide because a lot of people are getting the C1100 off of Ebay or other sources and trying to update firmware but having trouble.

    • So you botched up the BMC firmware update? 
    • The orange/amber light is blinking and blue light is on and the power button does nothing?

    The C1100 is stuck at amber orange blinking light?

    • Open up your C1100 (powered off)
    • Close to where the PCI-E card is, somewhere on the motherboard there are a few jumper.  On particular one, should say something like CLR CMOS.
    • Put the CLR CMOS so that its its on the other two pins from what it originally was.
    • Put the power cord in, wait 10 seconds, Pull the power cord.
    • Put the CLR CMOS jumper back to original position.
      • CAREFUL:  THE FANS WILL GO AT FULL THROTTLE
    • Put the power cord back in.  The fans will go at full throttle.
    • Now wait for like 5 or so minutes!  Plug in your monitor, keyboard and USB Bootable Thumbdrive with DOS and firmwares (see below).
    • It will first say CMOS and BMC not responding, loading defaults etc and restart.  Wait another 5 minutes, press F11 to get the BBS Priority and choose your USB thumb drive.
    • If you pull the power cord at any other moment, you will have to redo the CLR CMOS to boot up again.

    Getting the BIOS and BMC Files together:

    • Get DOS on USB (search for Rufus, find on github or google)
    • Get the latest BIOS B23
    • Get the latest BMC 1.82
    • Put it all in directory of the usb flash drive (make sure directory less than 8 characters)

    Updating the BIOS:

    • Boot to DOS
    • Find the BIOS directory ( I called mine b23)
    • Enter command AFUDOS <ROM NAME>.ROM /P /B /K /X
    • This is the same as the F.BAT file that comes from dell but with the /X.  The /X is important because it tells to ignore ROM ID
    • Wait to finish (DON'T RESTART YET, DO THE BMC Firmware Update)
      • Note: nothing critical, it's just that I did mine one after the other and it worked.

    Updating the BMC:

    • You have to edit the batch file and move some files around before you put it on the USB thumb drive.
    • Copy the FIRM.BIN to the DOSFLASH directory in SOCFLASH directory. 
    • Edit the dosflash.bat file:
      • socflash cs=2 option=fc if=firm.bin skip=0x200
    • The firm.bin is now in the same directory as socflash.exe.
    • Now you should be right after the BIOS Update from above.
    • Go to your BMC directory -> SOCFLASH -> DOSFLASH
    • Run the dosflash.bat file.
    • Give it a few minutes and you should be good.
    • Now after a minute of waiting just pull the power cord, wait a few seconds for complete power down and plug it back in.  Give it a few minutes and you should be golden.
  • Thanks for helping out the community @Sysusrer2013!  

  • No problem!  I had thought I bricked my C1100 too, but after struggling and reading partial fixes back and forth I had achieved success.  I just wanted to help others that might be having the same problem too.

  • There is a new version of the BMC; 1.84. Would this be a possible upgrade candidate aswell?

    The filesize is more than the double though.. I will try with 1.82 for now until some successful stories appear.

    Thanks for a nice guide!

  • No problem. 

    The main crux was that you needed to move that firm.bin file into the same directory socflash.exe and edit the dosflash.bat file.  It seems like socflash doesn't really know how to traverse a DOS directory tree and may be trying to use a Linux convention to the firm.bin location; I had even tried doing if=a:\...\firm.bin and that didn't work either.  However, just dumping it right next to socflash and calling if=firm.bin works fine.

    Let me know if you run into anything.

    Thanks!

  • Both my C1100 are flashed with success. Used BMC 1.82.

    Again, thanks for giving me enough confidence to dare try an upgrade :)

  • That's great to hear!  :)

    Since you mentioned the new BMC firmware, I might give that a try.  Right now the 1.82 BMC Web GUI looks a bit old fashioned (blue and white) and maybe the new BMC has that sleek black interface.

  • So following this post line for line actually ended up bricking my server when I was attempting to fix the "fan spinning up to 10,000 RPM every other second" issue. Reader beware if you have a "CS24-TY", do your research and figure out whether or not you actually have a Dell badged "Quanta". 

    Others with the same issue:

    http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/cloud/f/4715/t/19492940.aspx

    http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/cloud/f/4442/t/19491173.aspx

    http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/cloud/f/4442/t/19497619.aspx